Immigrant workers, advocates, business owners, and others urge President Biden to honor the invaluable contributions and sacrifices of our nation’s workers by providing substantial relief: work permits through avenues like temporary protected status.

Many industries cannot function without immigrant workers. We work in physical, demanding, and sometimes dangerous work. The deaths of the workers on the bridge illustrate that essential construction workers are vulnerable to sudden accidents and deaths.

Many workers in our industry have been here, contributing to our economy for five, 10, even 20 years without legal status. By extending work permits you will honor the labor of workers like Alejandro Hernandez Fuentes, Dorlian Ronial Castillo Cabrera, Maynor Yassir Suazo Sandoval, Miguel Luna, Jose Mynor Lopez, and Carlos Hernández, and millions of others.

8% of construction workforce

Latino workers are 8 percent of our construction workforce and suffer over 26 percent of the deaths, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Highest rate of deaths on the job

They also have the highest workplace injury rates, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. Some 130,000 immigrants work in the construction industry in the Baltimore and Washington regions, making up 39 percent of the workforce.